Marlon Samuels files defamation case against Geoff Lawson
West Indies batsman Marlon Samuels has filed a defamation case against former Australian cricket team pacer Goeff Lawson for ‘erroneous, malicious and unjustifiable comments’ that Samuels believes were made against him. The 35 year old said that he found the comments made by Geoff Lawson, who has also served as the coach of the Pakistan cricket team for a brief stint not just defamatory but also deeply offensive and damaging to his character.
The comments made by Geoff Lawson were on a radio podcast called the ‘Big Sports Breakfast’ on April 4, 2016 where he is said to have accused Samuels of being ‘tied up with gangs in Jamaica’. The comments were made one day after Marlon Samuels had put on a historic showing in the World T20 final to help his side clinch the trophy.
“He’s tied up with some shady people back in the West Indies….he’s a guy you don’t muck around with on or off the field. He’s from Kingston, Jamaica, it’s one of the murder capitals of the world…he’s tied up with gangs there, it goes well beyond cricket,” Lawson is quoted as having told the radio podcast in the statement.
It’s not only Geoff Lawson who is under question. The law suit also includes an Australia based journalist James Matthey, who published a news story on the website news.com.au, accusing Samuels of ‘being involved with criminal gangs in Jamaica’. The statement made by Samuels states that both the website and Big Sports Breakfast have also been sued for defamation for publishing and airing the comments. The article written by James Matthey also goes on to discuss the spat Marlon Samuels had with Shane Warne and paints the West Indian in bad light.
The full statement reads:
“Samuels has no criminal record nor has been the subject of any criminal investigations. The comments were published and aired with the absence of conducting proper journalist research, nor where Samuels contacted to give his views on the damaging remarks about his character”
Samuels was quoted as saying, “Through this case, I intend not only to defend my integrity and my image as a international cricketer but also the values I have defended all my career. I also wish to avoid any public figure from making insulting or false allegations against an athlete using the media, without any evidence or foundation and to go unpunished. If I win this case any compensation awarded I will donate some of the proceeds to the Marlon Samuels Society for the Blind in Jamaica”